Last week royal dress designer David Emanuel opened Bromley Bride’s new suite ’The Wonder Room’. We caught up with owner Becky to find out more about this new venture.
The inspiration for The Wonder Room, came from my all-time favourite childhood film Alice in Wonderland. I loved the film for the characters, colour and sense of fun. So, when the opportunity arose in January to take over an additional space upstairs in the boutique, it was time for me to think creatively! I wanted to create a VIP bridal suite where brides could come with their entourage, feel beautiful in their chosen dress and ultimately have fun at a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party!
The Art Deco theme arose from this concept, having been inspired by Mr Foggs’ bar and The Ned Hotel in London. I consulted a close friend Cassie Williams from Truffle Interiors, and together we formulated the look and chose furniture from Sweet Pea & Willow, which would help to transform the space. Overall, it took six months from inception to plan and create.
Our aim was to create a unique experience offering brides-to-be a personalised service, complete with a bar serving curious cocktails, sweet treat boxes, and their very own choice of music. Getting the ambience right whilst brides tried on our selection of high-end dresses was key to providing an unforgettable moment of Saying Yes to the Dress!
The launch evening was a great success! It was a pleasure to have an icon such as David Emanuel to officially open The Wonder Room. We also hosted three competition winners, each a bride-to-be who received expert styling advice from David in their private consultations.
One of the highlights was his opening speech, where he shared anecdotes on how to find the perfect wedding dress. He also consulted with our brides whilst they were trying on dresses – and we had a Say Yes to the Dress moment with one bride-to-be purchasing her dream dress!
We also had HELLO! magazine and Getty Images cover the event to interview David around Princess Diana’s Wedding dress, and her upcoming 40th wedding anniversary in 2021. David spoke openly about the influence the royal weddings have on dress designs and modern-day dresses.
One of the main drivers in opening The Wonder Room was to provide a luxury experience where brides could feel special and beautiful in their chosen dress, which in return would drive more dress sales.
It’s the perfect opportunity for our boutique to showcase our array of wedding dresses and provide a unique service to brides. Justin Alexander, Morilee and Hayley Paige dresses do very well for us, and our aim is to eventually expand our collection.
We also wanted to provide a key aftercare experience, where the brides could either return for alterations, or use the Wonder Room to choose her bridesmaid dresses.
Do your research. Identify your audience/customer base and find out what are they looking for. It’s also important to identify what is already available in the surrounding area so you can offer something unique.
I am inspired by the ambience of London hotels including The Ned, Corinthia and Sanderson; I wanted to take elements of their design and bring a touch elegance to the suburbs.
We are blessed to have a strong client base. We will be looking to expand the business when the time is right, and the opportunity arises. We would like to expand into Mother of the Bride, Groom and Occasionwear, to offer dresses for events like Royal Ascot, Wimbledon and Henley Royal Regatta.
Image credit: Dave Benett for Getty Images